Tying big steelhead flies can be quite a satisfying experience if you normally tie a lot of smaller flies. After a couple hours work, there is a nice satisfying pile to admire. Martin shows us his Lady Gaga stinger pattern in this video, a fly that can surely fill space in a short time with the big fox hair wing. Martin uses a 25mm Waddington shank, but I personally prefer the Senyo style shanks. I make sure to also double back the wire to keep it secure, and Martyn’s technique ensures the wire won’t pull out on a big fish or snag.
You’ll want to make sure you have a brush on hand to take out some of the fox hair underfur, otherwise you’ll end up with an unruly head, and one that is at risk of slipping out. I use a piece of velcro glues on a popsicle stick, or an old toothbrush with the bristles cut low. You can save the underfur to make your own dubbing and blends. Remember, you will be tying 3 stacks of fox, and flash in a small area, so the less underfur, the better. It will also help shed water easier and allow the fly to move more fluidly in the water. I really like Martyn’s tying and the fact that he strives to make the fly more than adequately durable.
Lady Gaga Fly Pattern Recipe
Shank: Waddington shank or intruder shank rigged with a loop of intruder wire or fireline
Thread: Black 6/0
Butt: Hot pink ice dubbing
Tail: Hot pink floss
Ribbing: Copper wire
Body: Gold flat braid then blue spectra flash dubbing (heavy)
Hackle: Hot pink schlappen
Wing: Pink flash, pink Arctic fox, kingfisher blue fox, turquoise flashabou, copper (fiery brown) flashabou
Collar: Blue Guinea fowl
Top Wing: Black fox hair
Eyes: Jungle cock nail
Be sure to check out this and other videos on Martyn White’s Youtube page and check out his blog at FlickingFeathers.
In my early days of tying flies, I was directed to have a close look at stonefly nymphs. These big flies were an easy introduction to nymphs in that their size meant I could ease into small er patterns as my confidence and skills improved. Coupled with the fact that they were heavy and got down into the strike zone quickly, helped in the decision. My own tying started with Brooks Stonefly Nymph, a pattern tied in the round, and the famous Kaufmann Stonefly Nymph in several colors. This pattern is great because of the weight, and how it is distributed over the length of the fly. It will work great in faster water and deeper runs to get where the fish are sitting. Boots are a wonderful material for nymphs of all types, but here, they are employed as tail, leg and antenna, cutting down on the number of materials needed in the fly. I like to mix in a bit of color into my stonefly dubbing, so in addition to the black, I may add a little red (ice or seal), yellow or blue. Just enough to break up the monotony of the black. Jim has some great tips along the way, and ties this pattern wonderfully.
Deep Black Stonefly Fly Pattern Recipe
Hook: 4xl streamer hook #6 – #12
Weight: .030 Lead Wire
Thread: Black 6/0
Tail: Black streamer hook
Abdomen: Heavy black wire 26 ga
Legs: Black goose biots
Thorax: Black rabbit dubbing
Antenna: Black goose biots
Be sure to check out this and other videos on Jim Misiura’s Youtube page.
I’ve been tying up a ton of Squidro Intruders over the past few months. I found a huge cache of silicone bass skirt material and have been happily whittling it down. The video is a little long, but is full of great technique for tying dubbing loops and rubber. I’ve been using a heavy wire shank, but a Waddington or Senyo shank works perfectly too. For the shirts, I find using the type with both ends fused work the best for keeping things under control and being able to tie in the legs all at once. It helps speed up the tying. With the huge range of silicone skirts available, there are endless possibilities for the pattern. Scott ties this using a loop on the back to guide the leader (old school), but you can also tie the streamer using a loop of wire and trailer hook.
Black and Blue Squidro
Shank: Waddington, Senyo or other shank 1 3/4″ (45mm)
Thread: 6/0 White / Black
Tag: Silver Mylar tinsel
Leader Guide: 20b mono
Butt: Kingfisher Blue dubbing (looped)
Rear Collar: Silicone skirt legs then Kingfisher Blue dubbing (looped)
Body: Silver Mylar Tinsel
Front Collar: Black dubbing then black finn raccoon(looped) and Silicone skirt legs (tied forward) then black marabou palmered
Weight: Dumbbell eyes 4.5 – 5.5 mm
Be sure to check out this and other videos on Scott Howell’s Youtube page.